In interior design, the kitchen triangle links the three areas of greatest activity: the sink, stove and refrigerator. There should be unobstructed access to and from all three of these locations. Of the three, the sink will see the most action and should have easy access to the stove and refrigerator, as well as your countertop workstations. Narrow aisles, inconvenient door swings and islands that cut off direct access to these key areas make kitchens less efficient and less convenient. When you're in the design stages, a few extra steps may not seem like much, but after a few hundred trips around a jutting island corner, you'll start to feel differently.
Once you've established a good flow, give some thought and attention to other areas in the room. There are secondary areas that need to be easily accessible to perform specific tasks, too. You'll want the trash close to the exterior door for easy disposal, or at least have a clear path to the door from the trash bay. You'll also want convenient access to a countertop where you can place groceries when coming in from out of doors. Another consideration is the communications area. If you have a desk, table or counter where you have a phone, writing material and possibly a computer or cookbooks, you'll want to position it so that it has, if not completely unobstructed access, at least relatively easy access to the other workstations in the room.
Evaluate how food will be served and eaten using your new kitchen design. Will you have in-kitchen seating? If so, how many people will you need to accommodate? If you will be serving food from the kitchen to a dining room, you'll also want an unobstructed path there from your prep station in order to move dishes in and out easily.